Tuesday, February 1, 2011

February Romance Novel Event: Interview with Anne Greene, Author of Masquerade Marriage

In honor of our February Romance Novel Event, The Book Connection is featuring a Q&A provided by author Anne Greene. You can read an excerpt from Masquerade Marriage by visiting our other post about this book.

How long have you been writing?

Masquerade Marriage is my second published book. I’ve been writing about ten years. Reading was my escape in my growing up years, and I’ve always wanted to be a writer. I graduated from the University of Texas cum laude with a degree in Literary Studies, but worked as a photographer and as a Real Estate Agent before diving in full-time to write. When I joined American Christian Romance Writers, the journey to writing got much easier. I have a wonderful critique group, and because of their annual conference, I’ve met many editors and agents. Finalling in writing contests gave me excellent feedback, plus got me my latest contract with White Rose Publishing. So, I recommend both contests and conferences.

What started you on your writing journey?

I’ve always wanted to write. When my children went to school and after work, I squeezed in a few hours a day to write.

What genres do you write and why?

I write in the Historical, Historical Romance, and Romantic Suspense genres. As a girl, I didn’t like history—until I read my first Historical novel. Then I was hooked. I know many people today don’t enjoy history, and my goal is to open up the glories of the past to them. History was modern life lived with all its heartache, joy, and excitement in a world very different from our own. I bring these different worlds into vivid, living color, and give a painless dose of history along the way. I write Romantic Suspense because I like to see good win over evil with fast action, surprises, and discover who did it and why.

Are there spiritual themes you like to write about?

I love to write about redemption in every form. Second chances, forgiveness, grace, finding God’s will, and finding and walking with the Savior. I love the grace of God, and His unexpected ways of showing His love. The spiritual theme of my books come directly from the characters and whatever problems they struggle with.

What is the most illuminating thing you discovered in researching Masquerade Marriage?

I loved delving deep into Scottish history. I am both Scotch and English as are so many Americans. I know my American history, but my knowledge of Scottish history was spotty until I began researching for this period. I loved weaving the information I gleaned into the fabric of my story. So many heroic people lived during that tremulous time. I love reading and writing about courage. In fact, a reader can find that theme in every one of my books.

Are there any fun tid-bits about this story you can share with us?

Brody’s been in love with Megan since he was fifteen. Megan found him hateful then and is certain he is now in love with her beautiful, older sister. The tension between the two is fun.

When was the book released?

Masquerade Marriage released October 1, 2010 and can be purchased either in paperback or eBook at WhiteRosePublishing.com, Amazon.com, barnesandnoble.com,cbd.com and booksamillion.com to name a few.

Which authors have inspired me?

That’s a hard one to answer. When I read a really good book, I just want to sit down and write one as good—or better. Masquerade Marriage is a book of my heart. My paternal ancestors are Scotch of Clan Gunn, which was located in the far north of Scotland in the Cathness area where Vikings intermarried with the Scots. I visited Scotland with the purpose of setting one or more historicals there, and fell in love with the country. The final battle between the English and the Scottish Highlanders changed the Highlands forever. A way of life ended. The drama in this story appealed to me, and so I wrote Masquerade Marriage. I love this time in history and so enjoyed living it as I wrote the book. I hope the reader finds a new world to love as he reads my book. I’m working on a sequel and a possible third book now.

Do I identify with any of my characters?

Absolutely – I have to become one with each of my characters. Just as an actress takes on the character of each person she portrays, so a writer becomes the character in her drama.

Which character was the hardest to get right?

I don’t try to get my characters right. I become the character. She/he tells me what is happening inside and what she plans to do about it, and then I just let her/him do it. That’s what so much fun about writing. I live each journey, each adventure of each character.

What’s the take-away message you want the reader to find in Masquerade Marriage?

That God is in control. No matter how awful the circumstances in a person’s life, God doesn’t let anything happen to you outside of His perfect will.

What advice would you give a new writer just starting out?

Definitely join a writing group like American Christian Fiction Writers and Faith, Hope and Love chapter of Romance Writers of America. They have classes, critique groups, and you get to meet other peculiar people like you are.

Let’s talk about other books you’ve written. I particularly like the sound of your sassy detective, please will you give us some teasers about these books?

My sassy detective is a bit like the Janet Evanovich character, Stephanie Plum, except Holly Gardens is a Christian with a Christian world view, and she has two men deeply in love with her. She rescues both of them, but having been dumped at the altar by a third, is unwilling to risk her heart again. This is a first book in a series of mysteries that she and the two male detectives solve. Each contains the growing tension of which man will ultimately win Holly. Holly’s overriding passion is to be a light in the dark underbelly of society as she solves mysteries. She’s also out to find the culprit who murdered her detective father and painted him as a drug dealer. Each mystery she solves brings her a little closer to finding her father’s killer and taking the detective agency out of the red. The title is Holly Garden, PI, Red Is For Rookie.

I also have several other books you might find interesting on my website, http://www.annegreeneauthor.com/.

What’s next?

I am working a sequel to Masquerade Marriage, as well as a number of other books. So just keep your eyes open for books written by Anne Greene.

Thanks for spending time with us today, Anne. We wish you continued success.


terri.forehand said...

I love Christian romance and mystery and always feel inspired with books showing that God is in Control even in the midst of pain. Looks like a good read.


Michelle V said...

Great interview. I do love Christian fiction! This one looks wonderful!

Michelle V

Marianne Evans said...

Great getting to know you even better Anne!! Congratulations on your success, and here's to much, much more ahead!! Blessings.

Mary Manners said...

Hi Anne,

I was looking back through some old contest-related papers and saw that we both finaled in the Finally a Bride contest a year or so ago. What a difference a year makes! I'm so happy for you. Keep writing such wonderful stories. I wish you much success.

Tanya Stowe said...

I loved the rich, textured Scottish settings, Anne. You made me feel like I was right in the middle of the battlefield. Great to see you here

April said...

Excellent interview Cheryl and Anne! Your book sounds wonderful, Anne. I love a great historical as well - being able to delve into another time where life was so different than what we know it as now. I love the cover of Masquerade Marriage as well!

LoRee Peery said...

Terrific interview. I enjoyed getting to know more about you, Anne. The difference in genres intrigues and inspires me.

Delia Latham said...

Great interview, ladies! Anne, the more I read about you, the more I want to meet you. Wouldn't it be nice to have a WRP conference...?

Rebecca Camarena said...

Interesting interview, I never thought about becoming the character.

Mayra Calvani said...

Great interview! I love reading romances during February. I already started! :-)